This is one rule that worked for me: Know your limitations. Embrace it – then work around it..
Sure, we could listen to the advise of career gurus that always say: push beyond your limits, work on these areas, achieve the impossible, rise up to challenges. These are good things, sometimes they do work, but not all the time.
But when you have reached your limit and you have taken it as far as you can go, consider working around it.
I am certified introvert, and no matter how I try, I could never be comfortable speaking to a large crowd. I could, but it will just stress me out to no end. I could try and ‘compete’ with colleagues who talk better than I do – even if their work sucks. But in the end, we know who is going to get the promotion – and its not going to be the quiet guy.
So while you see your colleagues buy the fancy cars, big mansions, and luxury vacations, try not to focus on those. Instead, focus on what you have. In my case, I have one thing other people did not have – patience.
No, its not the patience that’s waiting an eternity for a promotion. That’s stupidity. So, while my colleagues reap the rewards of their ‘success’ in the short term, I focused on the long term.
I knew that with my ‘lack of communication skills’, there will come a time when my luck will run out – and I know it will come earlier than most people. So, I set a target for age 55 or earlier. And that goal was financial independence. It was the the hope of freedom – from stress and helplessness in the midst of office politics. My someday.
I had 20 years to work it out. But I have the patience. High-yield investments require long term commitment. And that’s just fine with me.
I sought out a financial advisor who can work with me to achieve my financial goals. Now, I am 2 years away from my 55th birthday – but already I have achieved my targets.
I still plan to work 2 more years. But having no mortage, no debt and a 7-figure retirement fund, I have placed myself in a position where I would enjoy working.
In the meantime, those successful colleagues would still be working to pay off those luxuries they have taken. Some if them admittedly plan to work until their 70’s in order to sustain their lifestyle. That’s the reality with upgraded lifestyles, it also comes with neglected mortgages, upgraded costs in interest financing, and over-extended career life.
Is it really worth it?